interactive community wall transforms fence by chat travieso interactive community wall transforms fence by chat travieso
aug 29, 2013

interactive community wall transforms fence by chat travieso

interactive community wall transforms fence by chat travieso
all images courtesy of chat travieso




seeking to invert the function and meaning of a fence from a physical barrier to a place of inclusion, ‘on a fence’ by local brooklyn-based designer chat travieso, is a community orientated project that brings people together. produced in collaboration with graphic designer yeju choi, the installation features in a pop-up park called pier 42 in manhattan’s east river waterfront. organized by the lower east side waterfront alliance, lower manhattan cultural council – in partnership with NY state senator daniel squadron, and also the NYC department of parks and recreation – local residents of all ages participated in the design process and volunteered in the construction. working with community partner good old lower east side (GOLES) the installation transforms a portion of the fence bordering the park into an interactive structure. incorporating colorful signage on the outside face with seating and play areas on its inside. the appearance of the fence seems opaque from an oblique angle, and porous when looked at straight on. an arrow pattern acts as way-finding signage to help guide visitors towards the entrance of the pop-up park.

constructed mostly out of reclaimed scaffolding planks and standard 2 x 4 and 2 x 6 lumber, the freestanding structure bridges the existing chain link fence, without touching it – both highlighting and obfuscating its presence. painted vertical wooden slats sandwich the fence and form the main backbone of the installation. attached along the park-side of the wall are interactive pieces; a bike rack, stepped seating, shaded areas, a sand box, a small stage, a chalkboard wall, and seating with tables. on the outside face, layered colors of the slats create a moiré effect, where the colors change and appear to vibrate as one moves past. ‘on a fence’ is open until november 2013.



the layered colors from the vertical slats creates a moiré effect



view of the bike rack and stepped seating with thatched roof



view of seats with tables, stage with chalkboard wall behind it, sandbox, and stepped seating



enjoying the seats and tables



young people drawing on the chalkboard wall



using the stage for basketball practice



young people from the grand street settlement sitting on the stepped seats



view looking through the project



using the bike rack



playing in the sandbox



drawing on the chalkboard wall



project team: chat travieso, yeju choi, eduardo m. llinás-meseguer, jerome begin, esmé boyce, cody boyce, giulia carotenuto, charlene chai, christine chang, isaac esterman, good old lower east side (GOLES), GOLES healthy aging program (GHAP), grand st. settlement, ryan hartley, jenny hong, heechan kim, raj kottamasu, colette krogol, julian morales, ken murphy, neta nakash, pietro pagliaro, carmen pedroza, teresa pedroza, matt reeves, damaris reyes, carlina rivera, leah solk, jeanette “jet” toomer, jj veronis, kristen wilke, christine yao



designboom has received this project from our ‘DIY submissions‘ feature, where we welcome our readers to submit their own work for publication. see more project submissions from our readers here.


    RUBEN says:
  • Chat: I love your project and particularly the lifting of community that results from it! Keep sending me your creations!
    A big hug,

    Julia Fogarty says:
  • Great article. Art interacting with communities, how visual communication should be!

    Octopus Web Design says:
  • Chat, I love it! From the look to the different playful and fun spaces . What a fabulous way to bring people together and build a sense of community!
    I wish I were there to try it out!

    Regina says:
  • This is beautiful. “partnership with NY state senator daniel squadron, and also the NYC department of parks and recreation – local residents of all ages participated in the design process and volunteered in the construction.”. How do you even get something like this to happen? DO people have time on their hands? Are govt departments not strapped for funds and unwilling to support an aesthetic initiative? I’d like such efforts to happen at the most run down areas of India’s cities

    vinay says:

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